Customs intercepts drugs, smuggled rice worth N85m in Lagos, Ogun

The Federal Operations Unit, (FOU), Zone A, Ikeja of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Wednesday said it has intercepted banned drugs, smuggled rice worth N85million within three weeks in parts of Lagos and Ogun States.

This is even as the unit said it intercepted 4,208 bags of smuggled foreign Rice worth N55.3million that was concealed with tubers of cassava, animal feed and bottle of alcoholic products.

Speaking to newsmen on Wednesday in Lagos, the Customs Area Controller of the unit, Compt. Muhammed Aliyu said the contraband was seized while being moved from Oyo state to Lagos.

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According to him, due to the joint security operation at the land borders in the country, EX-SWIFT RESPONSE, the smugglers have found it difficult to smuggle rice into the country, hence, they are moving the ones already stored in the country to other locations.

He said, “We have some bags of rice stored in villages, that are being brought out in batches because of the joint security operation at the borders. Now, we see them concealing contraband with poisonous substances such as soap, animal feeds and even alcoholic drinks.

“For instance, this is a truck containing soap but when you check inside, the soap was used in concealing bags of rice. The truck contains 210 bags of smuggled rice but the soap is just a cover-up.”

The CAC further disclosed that drugs with no NAFDAC numbers were intercepted in the last one week.

He added that “drugs such as 3,888 sachets of bisoprolol Fumarate, 300 bottles of Lactulose, 600 sachets of Atorastattin, 2,000 bottles of mandanol nasal drop and 10,800 sachets of Furossamide have been seized so far.

Others are 279 Dihydrocodeine, 744 Kenalog 40mg injection, 300 cartons of Lansoprazole, 560 sachets clopidogrel, 1,764 contiflo and 320 sachets meloxicam among others.”

He, however, warned Corporate organisations to install trackers on their vehicles to forestall unscrupulous drivers from using the branded vehicles for rice smuggling.

Speaking on branded vehicles being used for smuggling rice and drugs, he said, “We have told the companies to put a tracker on their trucks so that they can monitor movement but because they don’t do such, the drivers used it for nefarious activities.

“Also, the truck and contents are seizure because they are means of conveyance.”

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